South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner Shaun Wright has refused to resign, despite his force being savagely criticised in a report on widespread child abuse in Rotherham.
And Mr Wright went on to say the scale of the problem in Rotherham, in which at least 1,400 children in the town were sexually exploited by criminal gangs between 1997 and 2013, ‘came as a surprise’.
The report blamed Rotherham Council and South Yorkshire Police for doing nothing when they knew about the problem.
Mr Wright was the councillor in charge of children’s services at Rotherham Council from 2005 to 2010.
He said he believed he was the most appropriate person to hold the post.
Rotherham Council leader Roger Stone has already resigned in the wake of the findings.
And political rivals, including UKIP and the Liberal Democrats, have said Mr Wright should also stand down from his role.
But Mr Wright has vowed to stay on.
“Had I known then what I know now I could have done more,” he said.
“As an elected member I came into this role to make a difference. At every stage I’ve done my utmost to protect those people.”
“I have taken lessons learned in that office and brought them to bear in my new role with South Yorkshire Police.”
“I believe I am the most appropriate person to hold this office at this current time.”